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NMM recipes for yellow metals


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I've been painting for a long time, but for most of my life I've used metallic metals. I've been branching out more recently into NMM, and I really like it.


So far, I have a good grasp on the concepts and techniques involved. The only trouble that I've come across is that I'm having a tough time figuring out what paints to use for what kinds of metals.


Brass and Gold are a little trickier than I'd like them to be. So far, I've tried out golds starting with very warm brown colors (like P3 Bloodstone) highlighting by mixing in a yellow color, then to white. To this, I've added a little depth by throwing in some turquoise to the lowest brown layer.


I'd like to learn a few more of the principles in choosing the NMM colors so that I don't feel so restricted. I'd like to do some copper or bronze metals that distinguish them selves from my gold, for example.


So, how do you go about choosing paints for your NMMs?

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A good way I choose my colors if I feel the need to venture outside of the tried-and-true recipes I've been using for years, is to find imagery on the web, or in games and take those into photoshop and really examine the colors using the picker and swatches.


If you take a look at concept art for video games (rpg games especially JRPG's) you can get some great artist's renditions of gold, or any metal really. Then once you've found a color that you'd like to emulate, you can bring the image into photoshop and use the picker eyedropper to find the colors that were used. Typically picking a shadow, midtone and highlight.


Once you've got those colors chosen you look for paints you have that match them closely. Having a large variety of paint helps but you can custom mix any colors you need from the basics as long as you have those.


For golds, you'll see alot of dark browns, orange browns, yellow ochres, green browns, lemon yellows and offwhite, typically speaking for a warm gold. For brass and even bronze you'll see more olive greens, green ochres and and even grey greens being used, more along the lines of "egg yolk" colors I guess you could say.


I guess a screenshot would do justice to this technique so I'll work one up. It's not hard to understand once you see a pic.





So a simple screenshot from an old game where I saw both yellow gold and bronze gold in the same image, all I did was just pick out the colors from the pixels and then all I would do now is look around my paint collection and try to get a close match.


If you don't have alot of paints you can custom mix any of those colors from basic colors and I'll show you an easy way to use the same image to help with that.




Ok in the above image I've got two circles in the color picker. A white one and a black one. The Black circle is the color you'd want to start with to mix that nice orangey brown. Which from the looks of it is just an orange color. You can obviously get that from using staight orange or even mixing yellow and red.


Once you have that orange to start with, if you look that white circle now, which is the target color you want to end up with, you see that all you need to do to get it is to add some black, to darken the value of the orange, and then since it's a little towards the left (lighter) of pure orange you can add some grey or white to get there as well. Either before or after you've added black. Color mixing is what that's all about, practice with amounts until you get the right color.


So in essence you would use these image sample to help with getting a color to work with on your mini, BUT it's not 100% science there's alot of artistic "eyeballing" that goes into mixing custom colors and overall knowledge of how color works and the color wheel operates will be of great help. Knowing when to add complementary colors and warm or cool greys, outside of the realm of simply adding black and white, will go a long way to ending up with the right color.



That's alot of words but I type very fast so it's no big deal to put that info out there. It's a technique I use all the time, grabbing pics off the net then using Photoshop to get a good set of starter colors for an effect or blend, I do that every day.

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Before anyone else says it, if you use the method above, you might also find that plugging the resulting swatch into the Power Palette is an easy way to determine the closest Reaper paint match to your target colour.


You might even get away with not doing the Photoshop stuff and just use the source image in the Power Palette, clicking on the spot where you see the colour(s) you want to use for your NMM recipe. But I'm not very familiar with the ins and outs of Photoshop, and have only played around a little with the Power Palette - YMMV...


Good luck!



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Well, thank you; that's a great way to find new recipes.


I could do the same thing with images from Comic Books (alot of them these days have good examples of NMM colors) or other images that I want to emulate. There's a lot of room in there, so there's a lot of direction I could take this.


Oh, ans Suikoden was awesome.

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My 'standard' gold NMM recipe (from shade to highlight) is:


VMC chocolate brown

GW bestial brown

GW snakebite leather

GW bubonic brown

GW sunburst yellow

GW white


taking many steps in between :) This gives a very yellowy gold. Using black instead of browns can give a dirtier golden look. Good luck!

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